JALT Journal - Issue 33.2; November 2011

Volume: 33
Issue No. 2
Date of publication: November 2011
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In this Issue

Articles 

This issue of JALT Journal includes three feature articles. The first is a study about error evaluation by Sean Mahoney, which considers the evaluative tendencies among three groups—native-speaking teachers (NSTs), nonnative-speaking teachers (NNSTs), and university-level L2 learners. The second study, a Japanese-language contribution by Takako Nishino, investigates how Japanese high school teachers perceive the use of CLT in their English classes. Results show that while respondents in this study had generally positive beliefs about CLT, they did not frequently use communicative activities in class, indicating a gap in beliefs and actual practice. Our third feature article, also written in Japanese, is by Tomomi Sakuragi, who examines the construct validity of complexity, accuracy, and fluency (CAF) measures in Japanese as a second language.

Research Forum

Thomas Lockley and Stephanie Farrell explore the relationship between language learners’ confidence in grammatical ability and actual speaking performance. This study challenges some commonly held perceptions about Japanese students, noting among other findings that the student participants preferred to concentrate on fluency rather than grammatical accuracy.

Reviews

In the first of our six book reviews, Dale Brown looks at a volume on vocabulary research. Our second review, by Jonathan Fisher, examines a book exploring narrative identity in language teaching. The third review, by Tim Greer, considers a book introducing Conversation Analysis (CA) to language teachers. In our fourth review, Nicholas Marshall reports on a volume dedicated to the social context in which language learning occurs. The fifth review, by John Racine, examines another of the recently published books dealing with researching vocabulary. The final review comes from Paul Rowan, who reports on an edited volume focusing on adult learners in different L2 contexts.

From the Editor

No editorial cycle is perfectly smooth. A lot goes on behind the scenes including dealing with a dearth or bounty of submissions, negotiating revision, and any number of hiccups in communication, editing, and meeting deadlines. Back in March, we had only one full-length English-language paper in the revision process that looked as if it might successfully negotiate the system in time for November publication. It had been sent back to the author with calls for relatively minor changes but the response was taking longer than usual. I sent a follow-up email in early April checking on progress. Still no reply. This sometimes happens but what with mounting concern over how unacceptably thin this issue was going to be without this contribution, frustration kicked in and I drafted a fairly sharp email to the author complaining about poor communication. 

Just before clicking the send button, I did a final check of the message and only then did I happen to register the email address—Fukushima University. Multiple scenarios, most of which were not good, ran through my mind. The submitting author was Sean Mahoney and we are thankful that his paper has obviously made it through. But at the time there was considerable worry for Sean’s safety. The flurry of emails and other communication that followed showed just what the JALT organization is capable of when a task presents itself. Led by Aleda Krause, our Director of Records and Journal Production Editor, we started asking if anyone knew Sean and word quickly arrived through the JALT network that he was safe but that he had evacuated with his family first to Shimogo, Fukushima and then to Canada. His office at the university had taken heavy damage, the university server went down shortly after the earthquake, and though it never arrived, Sean explained that he had sent the revised paper using a neighbor’s computer from a dial-up connection in the mountains. Someone was able to provide a couple of alternative email addresses, communication was quickly re-established, and the editorial process was successfully negotiated. Please note the acknowledgement at the end of Sean’s article—a thoughtful dedication. JALT Journal salutes Sean and the many others who have persevered through the Great East Japan Earthquake and resulting tsunami and nuclear disaster. We are inspired by contributions like this.

With this issue of JALT Journal, we bid farewell (or, hopefully, itte-irasshai) to Bill Perry who has held the position of Book Reviews Editor for 4 years. It has been a real pleasure to work with Bill over the years. Anyone who has submitted a book review during Bill’s tenure will have benefited from his thoughtful editorial direction and eagle eye. We’ll miss him on the production side as well—he always had the last look at an issue before it went to the printer. Bill leaves us for Kazakhstan where he will continue his EFL teaching career in the Peace Corps. We welcome Greg Rouault as our new Book Reviews Editor. Greg has been actively involved in JALT Publications over the years with editorial and production experience at The Language Teacher, the Conference Proceedings, and JALT Journal. Thanks, as always, to the production and proofreading team for their valuable work. Alan Stoke and Amy Brown join the team as proofreaders effective immediately. Alan brings a wealth of JALT Publications experience with him and we are pleased to have him on board. Amy is new to JALT Pubs but has impressed us already with her proofreading skills. It’s a pleasure to see new people willing to contribute at this level. We have been most pleased by the number of people who have volunteered for a role in the journal as a proofreader. With plans to expand the team, we will make formal announcements about more new members of the production and proofreading team in the next issue.

Finally, we are pleased to announce that Mike Guest is joining the Editorial Advisory Board. To the standing members of EAB and the additional readers, I simply can’t say enough about your commitment to JALT Journal. A special thank you to the Tokyo-based members of the EAB and Japanese-language readers and reviewers based in northern Japan, who have continued to review manuscripts under difficult circumstances.

Darren Lingley

Errata

We would like to apologize for an error in the previous issue (May, 2011). In the Japanese-language article, 英語音声学・音韻論的特徴の習得を目指した授業の効果検証 [An Analysis of the Effectiveness of a Phonetics/Phonology-Based English Listening Class], by Eri Tanaka and Hiroyuki Yamanishi, a reference was incorrectly printed. The correct reference is as follows:

安藤貞雄. (1993). 『英語の論理・日本語の論理』. 東京: 大修館書店. 

 

Contents


JALT Journal

Exploring Gaps in Teacher and Student EFL Error Evaluation
by Sean Mahoney, Fukushima University

コミュニカティブ・アプローチに関する日本人高校英語教師の信条と実践 – Japanese High School Teachers’ Beliefs and Practices Regarding Communicative Language Teaching
by 西野孝子 – Takako Nishino, 神田外語大学

「複雑さ・正確さ・流暢さ」指標の構成概念妥当性の検証:日本語学習者の発話分析の場合 – The Construct Validity of the Measures of Complexity, Accuracy, and Fluency: Analyzing the Speaking Performance of Learners of Japanese
by 桜木ともみ – Tomomi Sakuragi, 広島大学大学院教育学研究科

Research Forum: Is Grammar Anxiety Hindering English Speaking in Japanese Students?
by Thomas Lockley, Kanda University of International Studies; Stephanie Farrell, Ozyegin University, Turkey

Reviews
by Dale Brown, Jonathan Fisher, Tim Greer, Nicholas Marshall, John Racine, and Paul Rowan

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